The European Commission has kicked off the Women TechEU, aiming to support deep-tech startups led by women and to boost the overall European innovation ecosystem by attracting more female talent. This new scheme is part of the new Horizon Europe innovation ecosystems programme, reinforced by the European Innovation Council (EIC).
Deep tech accounts for over a quarter of Europe’s startup ecosystem, with European deep tech companies now valued at a combined €700 billion and counting. Yet women remain underrepresented. 15% of innovative start-ups are founded or co-founded by women, and only 6% have all-women founding teams. In Europe, only around 5% of venture capital goes to mixed teams and only 2% to all-female teams. Women TechEU is presented to address this gender gap in the industry and to boost female innovators.
Women TechEU will offer financial support with grants of 75000 EUR to support the initial steps in the innovation process and the growth of the companies. Additionally, the scheme offers fist-class coaching and mentoring through the EIC’s Women Leadership Programme. Up to 50 promising deep tech start-ups from EU Member States and Associated Countries will be funded under the first Women TechEU pilot call, starting from 2022.
The call for proposals is now open. The deadline for submissions is on 10 November 2021.
© European Innovation Council